Knowledge and Beliefs about the Practice of Breast Self-examination among Macau Female Nurses


Phoenix Weng Ian Pang, Kenneth Sellick

Journal Information
The International Journal of Health, Wellness, and Society Volume 3, 2014, 101-111


Despite the high prevalence of breast cancer, the survival rate has improved over recent years. In most countries, it is recommended that women of all ages perform a breast self-examination (BSE) monthly, including nurses. However, studies have found the number of nurses who practice BSE is no higher that women in general. Hence the main purposes of this study are to survey the BSE practices of Macau nurses, and examine factors that differentiate between BSE practices and non-practices.


A proportional sample of female registered nurses working in the hospital and community health centers in Macau were surveyed using self-report questionnaires.


Findings from the survey found that 69.2% of registered female nurses surveyed practiced BSE, but only 45.7% did on a monthly basis. A comparison of two groups found hospital nurses perceived breast cancer as more serious, had less confidence in performing BSE correctly, and fewer practiced BSE than nurses working in health centers. The analyses compared BSE practices and non-practices, and found age and work settings were the two factors that significantly differentiated between two groups.


The study indicates the need for the implementation and evaluation of a BSE education program that targets both registered and student nurses.

Breast Cancer; Breast Self-examination; Nurse

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